The Lions released their unofficial depth on Monday. Head coach Jim Caldwell said he wouldn’t discuss starting roles until a depth chart appeared. However, this depth chart was arranged by the media relations department, not the coaches, so it must be taken with a grain of salt.
That said, the biggest depth chart movement is that of Nick Fairley. The defensive tackle struggled at times and lost his grip of the starting role. His on-field performance is disappointing and his off-the-field actions are worse. This offseason, Fairley was sentenced to six months in jail for a DUI and reckless driving charge that dates back to 2012. This may be a step in the right direction for Fairley.
Kellen Moore is officially on less solid footing with the team. Matt Stafford has been a sure thing these last three seasons, starting 16 games and throwing for 4,600 yards or more each year.
Waddle gets the go-ahead of Hilliard for a starting job.
Here are the full notes, via NFL Nation reporter Michael Rothstein:
- Nick Fairley is apparently back with the starters. He is listed ahead of C.J. Mosley at defensive tackle alongside Ndamukong Suh.
- LaAdrian Waddle is listed ahead of Corey Hilliard at right tackle, so he might have won the job there.
- Jed Collins is ahead of Montell Owens at fullback, but this isn’t too much of a surprise because he’s been working there all camp.
- Tahir Whitehead is the team’s starting SAM linebacker, backed up by Kyle Van Noy. Ashlee Palmer is listed as the backup to WILL linebacker DeAndre Levy. Expect this to change if Van Noy heads to short-term IR.
- Dan Orlovsky is the No. 2 quarterback over Kellen Moore.
- Jeremy Ross (backing up Calvin Johnson) and Kevin Ogletree (backing up Golden Tate) are listed as the No. 2 receivers. Fuller is behind Johnson and Ross and Broyles is behind Tate and Ogletree.
- Jerome Couplin is listed as the No. 2 strong safety behind James Ihedigbo. Don Carey is the No. 2 free safety and Isa Abdul-Quddus the No. 3 free safety.